An icon of Russian automobile luxury

Chaika “Tshaika” 13 GAZ

A Chaika (Russian: Чайка), which means gull, is a luxury

automobile from the Soviet Union made by GAZ. The

vehicle is one step down from the ZIL limousine.

Specifications and history

Chaika   production   consisted   of   two   generations.   The   Mark   1   Chaika,   the   GAZ   M13,   debuted   in 1958.   The   cabriolet   was   made   in   1961   and   1962   for   official   parades.   It   was   produced   from   1959 to   1981,   with   3,179   built   in   all.   The   M13   was   powered   by   a   195   hp   (145   kW;   198   PS)   5.5L   V8   and driven    through    a    push-button    automatic    transmission    of    a    similar    design    to    the    Chrysler TorqueFlite   unit.   It   was   offered   as   a   saloon   (GAZ   13),   limousine   (GAZ   13A),   and   four-door cabriolet (GAZ 13B) with an electrohydraulic top. RAF   in   Riga   produced   the   GAZ   13A   Universal,   an   estate,   in   the   1960s   in   Riga;   this   was   also   built as   the   GAZ   13C   ambulance,   as   well   as   a   hearse.   Produced   for   a   few   years   in   the   1960s,   it   is   the lowest-volume   Chaika   variant.   Small   numbers   were   also   built   for   Mosfilm.   As   a   limousine-class car,   Chaikas   were   available   only   to   the   Soviet   government,   and   could   not   be   purchased   by average   citizens.   However,   citizens   were   allowed   to   rent   Chaikas   for   weddings.   Chaikas   were used   by   Soviet   ambassadors   and   Communist   Party   First   Secretaries   in   East   Germany,   Korea, Bulgaria,   Hungary,   Mongolia,   and   Finland,   among   others;   Fidel   Castro   was   given   one   by   President Nikita   Khrushchev,   who   himself   preferred   the   Chaika   to   his   ZIL,   and   kept   one   at   his   summer dacha.   For   their   larger   size   and   more   powerful   V8,   Chaikas   were   also   ordered   in   some   quantity by the KGB. Top speed was 99 mph (159 km/h). Most   Chaikas   were   saloons.   The   M13B   was   built   for   only   two   years   1961   and   1962.   The   GAZ   13 was   discontinued   in   1981.   The   M14   debuted   in   1977,   and   ran   to   the   end   of   Chaika   production   in 1988.

Second generation

The   vintage   1950s-style   M13   was   succeeded   by   the   more   modern   Chaika   M14   introduced   in   1977 (although   production   of   both   versions   overlapped   by   several   years).   Although   visually   modern and   fitted   with   the   latest   electronic   luxury   features,   the   M14   was   in   fact   built   around   the drivetrain   and   undercarriage   of   the   older   model.   The   M14   engine   was   a   modernized   5,526   cc (337.2    cu    in)    and    achieved    220    horsepower    (160    kW).    A    seven-seater,    with    special soundproofing,   it   measured   611   cm   (241   in)   long   overall   and   weighed   in   at   2,600   kg   (5,732   lb). A four-door convertible, the 14-95, appeared in 1982. The   Chaika   M14   remained   in   production   from   14   October   1977   to   1988,   after   which   point   the Chaika limousine brand was ended. Around   a   hundred   M14s   were   built   each   year,   with   total   production   (including   those   out   of spares   in   1989)   reaching   1,114.   On   orders   from   Mikhail   Gorbachev,   the   blueprints   and   tooling were destroyed as part of his "fighting privileges" campaign under perestroika.


Engine 5.5 litres V8 Lenght/width 5,6 m/2,0 m Weight 2050kg The collections Chaika is a living example of the bilateral commerce between Soviet Union and Finland. Several Chaikas were imported for the corporate management use. This one served in Jämsänkoski for the legendary director Juuso Walden of United Paper Mills.
Photos mainly by Matti Kreivilä. Historical facts and technical details of the vehicles provided by Wikipedia. Movies YouTube.